Scouting Report: Rolando McClain

Written by Will Spencer on February 23, 2010

Rolando McClain

Position: LB School: Alabama
Height: 6’3 3/8" Weight: 254 lbs
Class: Junior 40 time: 4.68

Overall Grade:


Draft Projection:

First Round

Draft Breakdown Red Star Player

Non-position specific categories


Max. Value


Height/Weight 6 6
Speed 8 7
Quickness/Agility 10 8.5
Strength/Explosion 10 8.5
Athletic Ability 8 7
Durability 8 7.5
Character 6 6
Production/Experience 6 6
Toughness 8 8
Potential 10 10

Linebacker Specific Categories


Max. Value


Run Stopping 8 7.5
Coverage 8 7
Pass Rushing 8 6
Tackling 8 7
Instincts 8 8
Hips/Lateral Movement 8 7.5

Explanation of Player Grading System


Very good instincts. Reads and reacts quickly to the ball. Flows well to the outside. Outstanding lateral movement. Uses his hands well to keep blockers at bay and/or get off blocks. Sure tackler. Sniffs out the screen pass as well as any linebacker I’ve seen. Does a nice job reading the QBs eyes in coverage. Gets his hands up when passes are in the air. Very smart player and was the unquestioned leader of the best defense in college football for 2009. Does a nice job cleaning things up when runners are contacted. Has all the physical tools you look for in a linebacker. Decent range. Does a nice job getting through crowds to get to the ball carrier.


Can get high in his tackles sometimes and will try to use his arms to drag the runner down. Lower body strength could improve. Motor runs cool at times in certain game scenarios. Not frequently a big time hitter, but will deliver a strike when given the opportunity. Needs to do a better job of keeping blockers from getting to his legs. Has all the tools, but there is room for improvement. Can get sucked in on play actions or misdirections at times.


McClain is a very smart player with all the physical tools. Also played on one of the few 3-4 defenses in college football, giving him a huge advantage in the draft. McClain produced at a high level at all times with Alabama, which plays in arguably the toughest conference in college football. Nick Saban’s defense isn’t vanilla, so McClain has the aptitude to comprehend any NFL scheme. Not only does he have the tools, but McClain also probably hasn’t topped out in his abilities yet. There is room for improvement in his skill set, but is still unquestioned top inside linebacker in the draft. Recently revealed that he suffers from Chrons Disease, but this should not affect his play or draft stock.


Played in all 13 games as a freshman, starting 8. Started every game as a sophomore and junior.

Awards and Honors

2009: First team All-American. First team All-SEC. Dick Butkus and Jack Lambert Award winner. SEC Defensive Player of the Year.
2008: Finalist for the 2008 Butkus Award. Third-team All-American by the Associated Press. First-team All-SEC selection by the Associated Press, Sporting News, SEC coaches and Phil Steele.
2007: First team Freshman All-SEC selection by league coaches. First-team Sporting News Freshman All-American.


Unknown major at Alabama.


Minor injuries in offseason motorcycle accident in 2008. Never missed a game due to injury.

Career Stats
Year Tack Solo Asst Sack FF Int TD
2009 101 53 52 4 1 2 0
2008 91 45 46 3 0 1 0
2007 74 36 38 1 0 2 0

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Will Spencer

Will is the founder and President of Draft Breakdown & has been scouting draft prospects since 2002. His work has been featured in numerous publications, including the USA Today Draft Preview Magazine, the official website of the Baltimore Ravens, Ravens Insider and The Orange and Brown Report. Will has previous playing experience as a defensive end in the AFA, is currently a member of the Football Writers Association of America and graduated from the SMWW Football Scouting course in 2009.

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